It’s estimated that more than 29 million Americans have diabetes, a serious condition that affects your body’s ability to regulate blood sugar. Unfortunately, because this chronic disease doesn’t always present symptoms in its early stages, regular checkups are extremely important. At SpringRidge Medical Clinic in Clinton, Mississippi, Shinita Dudley, MD, regularly works with her patients to diagnose and treat diabetes. To request your appointment with Dr. Dudley, call the office or click the online booking tool today.
Diabetes is a group of chronic diseases that affect the way your body uses blood glucose or blood sugar. Glucose is important because it provides energy for all of your cells and promotes healthy brain function. If you have diabetes, it means your blood sugar levels are too high. Left unmanaged, diabetes increases your risk of more serious health problems including permanent nerve damage, heart disease, and even amputation.
In its early stages, diabetes doesn’t always present obvious symptoms. As a result, many people have diabetes and don’t even realize it. Visiting the doctor at least once each year for an annual wellness exam is one of the easiest and most effective ways to catch this serious health problem early on.
At SpringRidge Medical Clinic, Dr. Dudley diagnoses and treats the three types of diabetes:
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that causes your immune system to attack and destroy cells in your pancreas. Your pancreas produces a protein known as insulin that helps keep your blood sugar levels in check. Without proper insulin levels, your blood sugar spikes. There’s no cure for Type 1 diabetes. However, it’s possible to manage the condition with healthy lifestyle changes and prescription medications.
Type 2 diabetes occurs when your body doesn’t produce enough insulin or it resists the insulin you produce. If caught early enough, it’s possible to reverse Type 2 diabetes through healthy lifestyle changes such as diet and exercise.
Gestational diabetes only affects pregnant women. During pregnancy, the placenta creates hormones that sustain your health. However, these hormones also make your cells resistant to insulin. If your pancreas is unable to produce enough insulin to offset the imbalance, you might develop gestational diabetes. This type of diabetes usually subsides after you give birth.
To diagnose diabetes, Dr. Dudley does a physical exam, reviews your medical history, and asks you questions about your symptoms and lifestyle. Next, she orders a glycated hemoglobin (A1C) test to determine your blood sugar levels. Depending on your results, she might also order a fasting blood sugar test or an oral glucose tolerance test.
Treatment of diabetes depends on the type of diabetes you have and the severity of your symptoms. If you have Type 2 diabetes, Dr. Dudley might recommend eating a healthy diet, losing weight, and exercising more regularly. If you have Type 1 diabetes, Dr. Dudley prescribes insulin and combines medication management with lifestyle changes. Working together with you, she can help ease your symptoms and improve your quality of life.
If you’re concerned about your risk of diabetes, don’t wait to make an appointment at SpringRidge Medical Clinic –– call the office or click the online booking tool today to begin.